Coronavirus in Oregon: 151 new cases, 2 deaths as wildfires appear to hinder testing

The Oregon Health Authority on Monday reported 151 new coronavirus cases and two more deaths, with the prospect of aggressive testing this week compromised because of wildfires across the state.

State officials said testing numbers in recent days appear to have dipped, perhaps in part because fewer people are seeking testing.

But some test locations have shut down because of hazardous air quality. OHSU, for instance, closed its two drive-thru locations Friday. They’ll remain closed through at least Tuesday.

The Oregon State Public Health Laboratory also closed Monday, citing hazardous indoor air quality. The state lab is not accepting or analyzing coronavirus samples, with existing samples being held in a temperature-controlled environment.

It’s unclear when the state lab, which can process several hundred tests a day, will reopen as smoke is expected in the Portland area through much of this week. State officials said they’ll begin running labs at the facility as soon as air safety standards can be met.

Where the new cases are by county: Clackamas (18), Columbia (1), Coos (1), Deschutes (3), Douglas (3), Jackson (4), Jefferson (1), Klamath (1), Lane (19), Malheur (13), Marion (11), Morrow (2), Multnomah (27), Polk (1), Umatilla (23), Union (1), Wasco (1), Washington (18) and Yamhill (3).

New fatalities: Oregon’s 510th death linked to coronavirus is an 87-year-old Lane County man with underlying health conditions. He tested positive Sept. 1 and died Sept. 13 at his residence.

The 511th fatality is a 92-year-old Washington County woman with underlying medical conditions. She tested positive Aug. 20. State officials said details about her date and location of death are pending.

The prevalence of infections: State officials had not disclosed detailed data since Friday. Since then, officials reported 591 new confirmed infections out of 9,037 people tested, equaling a 6.5% positivity rate.

Who got infected: State officials had not disclosed detailed data since Friday. New confirmed or presumed infections grew among the following age groups: 0-9 (30); 10-19 (60); 20-29 (139); 30-39 (105); 40-49 (100); 50-59 (79); 60-69 (51); 70-79 (26); 80 and older (28).

Who’s in the hospital: The state Monday reported 95 Oregonians with confirmed coronavirus infections are currently in the hospital, down five from Friday. Oregon remains well below its capacity, with hundreds of hospital beds and ventilators available.

Since it began: Oregon has reported 29,484 confirmed or presumed infections and 511 deaths, among the lowest totals in the nation. To date, 613,371 Oregonians have been tested.

— Brad Schmidt; bschmidt@oregonian.com; 503-294-7628; @_brad_schmidt

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